Dr Nikolas Gunn

I work on the languages and literatures of England and the North Sea region in the early and high Middle Ages, but especially Old English and Old Norse. At the heart of my academic approach is a belief that we cannot really understand the intellectual culture and literary output of the  Anglo-Saxon period without centring its international, multilingual character.

My current research focuses specifically on the contact between Old English and Old Norse speech communities, tracing linguistic and literary connections from c.800-1250. I am working on my monograph focusing on English loanwords in Old Norse, as well as research on vernacular biblical translation in the context of the Viking Age.

My work is self-consciously interdisciplinary, straddling the line between linguistic and literary studies. In addition to my focus on Anglo-Scandinavian contact, I maintain interests in heroic poetry, Christianisation, translation, and the history of English as a contact language.



I teach the first-year courses Introduction to English Language (Prelims Paper 1A) and Early Medieval Literature (Prelims Paper 2), as well as the second-year course the History of the English Language to c.1800 (FHS Course II Paper 4).

I have previously taught Old and Middle English literature at University College London, and Old English and Old Norse at the University of York.

I am part of TORCH's Early Medieval Britain and Ireland Network.


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